Introduction to Game Design

A practical introduction to game design and game design concepts, emphasizing the basic tools of game design: paper and digital prototyping, design iteration, and user testing.
This course is archived
Estimated 7 weeks
8–10 hours per week
Instructor-paced
Instructor-led on a course schedule

About this course

Skip About this course

We have all played and enjoyed games, but how do people actually design them? How do you describe a game? What are the basic elements? How do designers create an experience for the player? What about prototyping and iterating?

This course explores these questions and others through six content units over seven weeks. Participants will be introduced to game design and game design concepts, emphasizing the basic tools of game design: paper and digital prototyping, design iteration, and user testing. The audience for this course includes current and aspiring game designers and those interested in delving deeply into the game creation process.

For the course project, participants will create either a digital game or a board game. This course leverages Gameblox, a game editor that uses a block based programming language to allow anyone to create games.

At a glance

  • Institution: MITx
  • Subject: Education & Teacher Training
  • Level: Introductory
  • Prerequisites:
    Familiarity with board and video games; interest in designing and understanding how games work. Willing to learn and use a simple game programming language.
  • Language: English

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn
  • How to unpack the term "game," incorporating different concepts and multiple perspectives.
  • How to analyze the mechanics of paper and digital games, considering how these mechanics affect gameplay and player experiences.
  • How to design, develop, and test paper and digital prototype games using an iterative design process and incorporating user feedback.

About the instructors